The Jamaica Business Development Corporation (JBDC) through its Craft Incubator, continues to support the growth of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) in the gift and craft sector.
To this end, the Corporation will be hosting a three-day workshop for intermediate and advanced jewellery makers on June 18 and 25 and July 2, starting at 11:a.m each day. The workshop titled ‘The Perfect Finish’, will be held at the JBDC Incubator & Resource Centre located at Unit 10a, 76 Marcus Garvey Drive in Kingston, and will focus on using precious metal clay to create jewellery pieces.
Participants in the three-day workshop are required to contribute $14,000 each, which must be paid by or before Tuesday, June 14.
Persons interested in attending may visit the JBDC website at https://www.jbdc.net/ or call (876) 618-0605 or (876) 758-3966-8 for further information.
In an interview, Manager, Technical Services at the JBDC Colin Porter, told JIS News that the workshop is designed to support entrepreneurs in several ways and “will not just focus on teaching the technique of how to make jewellery from precious metal clay, but also how to pull all the other elements together. These include, the importance of design, being able to identify target markets, having the right product and going through the production process”.
He added that this is a great opportunity for persons who have a background in jewellery making to get familiar with the material and be exposed to transforming it into various shapes to make numerous products.
“We want persons to be innovative with the material and to look at it as a business venture. We expect persons to gain a lot and be able to develop businesses from it. We are not talking about making trinkets but, making relatively high value products that can be of great monetary and design significance,” he continued.
Additionally, he said that the Incubator is part of the “suite of tools” used by the JBDC to support entrepreneurs in developing their products for market.
“The Incubator is a space that is made available for MSMEs to come and be innovative. It was designed to facilitate a range of gift and craft techniques including, jewellery making and textile production,” the Technical Services Manager shared.
Addressing the needs in product development within the gift and craft sector, Mr. Porter explained that there are several things which have proven to be of great significance.
“We have found that there is the need for entrepreneurs to have access to market information so that they can develop the right products for the market; proper technique to ensure that products are consistent, and the ability for persons to produce sustainably and competitively while controlling costs. These are some of the needs that are addressed by our technical experts,” he pointed out.
Citing disruptions in the global value chain, he noted that, “it is important for us to source our materials locally. This sector depends heavily on materials and so finding sustainable supplies…and converting them is very important”.
Mr. Porter added that, “packaging which supports the nature of the product is also important and these are things that we assist entrepreneurs with”.
He emphasised that the trainings offered by the JBDC are not solely focused on techniques, but how entrepreneurs can conceptualise and develop their products, how they can become effective manufacturers and how to be better skilled at marketing their products.